Strengthening Intergenerational Equity at the Ocean-Climate Nexus: Reflections on the UNCRC General Comment No. 26

Environmental Policy and Law (2022)

17 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2022

See all articles by Elisa Morgera

Elisa Morgera

Strathclyde Law School

Mitchell Lennan

University of Aberdeen School of Law ; University of Strathclyde - Strathclyde Centre for Environmental Law and Governance

Date Written: November 24, 2022

Abstract

The 2021 Glasgow Climate Pact brought the ocean into the international climate regime, and the 2022 Sharm el-Sheikh COP27 of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) has finally ushered the world into a special fund to respond to loss and damage associated with the adverse effects of climate change, including on the human rights of present and future generations. But much remains to be clarified about how ocean-based mitigation, adaptation, finance and technology will contribute to inter-generational equity. To shed light on these issues, this article starts from the premise that the ocean is an essential but little-understood component of the interdependency between climate change and human rights. It is followed by an exploration of the importance of a healthy ocean for children’s human rights as a way to advance inter-generational equity under the 30-year-old (1992-2022) UNFCCC through systemic interpretation. The upcoming General Comment on children’s rights and the environment with a special focus on climate change (General Comment No. 26) by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child presents an opportunity to clarify the role of existing international human rights obligations in strengthening intergenerational equity at the climate-ocean interface on the basis of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). This appears vital to ensure coordination across intergovernmental bodies and national government departments to safeguard ocean-dependent children’s human rights through climate policy and action at different levels.

Keywords: UNFCCC, UNCRC, Glasgow Climate Pact, ocean-climate nexus, ocean-dependent children’s human rights, inter-generational equity, COP27

Suggested Citation

Morgera, Elisa and Lennan, Mitchell, Strengthening Intergenerational Equity at the Ocean-Climate Nexus: Reflections on the UNCRC General Comment No. 26 (November 24, 2022). Environmental Policy and Law (2022) , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4284824

Elisa Morgera

Strathclyde Law School ( email )

Lord Hope Building
141 St James Rd
Glasgow 1XQ, Scotland
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.strath.ac.uk/research/strathclydecentreenvironmentallawgovernance/

Mitchell Lennan (Contact Author)

University of Aberdeen School of Law ( email )

Taylor Building
King's College
Aberdeen, Scotland AB24 3UB
United Kingdom

University of Strathclyde - Strathclyde Centre for Environmental Law and Governance ( email )

16 Richmond Street
Glasgow 1XQ, Scotland G1 1XQ
United Kingdom

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